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Mechanical Analyses of Wipp Disposal Rooms Backfilled with Either Crushed Salt or Crushed Salt-Bentonite

  • Ralph A. Wagner (a1), G. D. Callahan (a1) and B. M. Butcher (a2)

Abstract

Numerical calculations of disposal room configurations at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, NM are presented. Specifically, the behavior of either crushed salt or a crushed salt-bentonite mixture, when used as a backfill material in disposal rooms, is modeled in conjunction with the creep behavior of the surrounding intact salt. The backfill consolidation model developed at Sandia National Laboratories was implemented into the SPECTROM-32 finite element program. This model includes nonlinear elastic as well as deviatoric and volumetric creep components. Parameters for the models were determined from laboratory tests with deviatoric and hydrostatic loadings. The performance of the intact salt creep model previously implemented into SPECTROM-32 is well documented.

Results from the SPECTROM-32 analyses were compared to a similar study conducted by Sandia National Laboratories using the SANCHO finite element program. The calculated deformations and stresses from the SPECTROM-32 and SANCHO analyses agree reasonably well despite differences in constitutive models and modeling methodology. These results provide estimates of the backfill consolidation through time. The trends in the backfill consolidation can then be used to estimate the permeability of the backfill and subsequent radionuclide transport.

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1. Butcher, B. M., 1990. Preliminary Evaluation of Potential Engineering Modifications for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, SAND89–3095, prepared by Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM.
2. Callahan, G. D., Fossum, A. F., and Svalstad, D. K., 1990. Documentation of SPECTROM-32: A Finite Element Thermomechanical Stress Analysis Program, prepared by RE/SPEC Inc., Rapid City, SD, RSI-0269, for Office of Nuclear Waste Isolation, Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus, OH, February.
3. Callahan, G. D., 1990. Crushed Salt Consolidation Model Adopted for SPECTROM-32, prepared by RE/SPEC Inc., Rapid City, SD, RSI-0358, for Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, September.
4. Sjaardema, G. D. and Krieg, R. D., 1987. A Constitutive Model for the Consolidation of Crushed Salt and Its Use in Analyses of Backfilled Shaft and Drift Configurations, SAND87–1977, prepared by Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM.
5. Weatherby, J. R. and Brown, W. T., 1990. Closure of a Disposal Room Backfilled With a Salt/Bentonite Mix, Sandia National Laboratories Internal Memorandum to B. M. Butcher, Division 6332, Albuquerque, NM.
6. Fossum, A. F., Callahan, G. D., Van Sambeek, L. L., and Senseny, P. E., 1988. How Should One-Dimensional Laboratory Equations be Cast Into Three-Dimensional Form?, Proceedings, 29th U.S. Symposium on Rock Mechanics, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN.
7. Munson, D. E., 1989. Proposed New Structural Reference Stratigraphy, Law, and Properties, Sandia National Laboratories Internal Memorandum, Albuquerque, NM.
8. Krieg, R. D., 1984. Reference Stratigraphy and Rock Properties for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Project, SAND83–1908, January.
9. Munson, D. E., Fossum, A. F., and Senseny, P. E., 1989. Advances in Resolution of Discrepancies Between Predicted and Measured In Situ WIPP Room Closures, SAND88–2948, prepared by RE/SPEC Inc. for Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, March.
10. Morgan, H. S., 1987. Estimate of the Time Needed for TRU Storage Rooms to Close, Memorandum to D. E. Munson, Sandia National Laboratories, Division 6332, Albuquerque, NM, June.
11. Callahan, G. D., 1990. Presentation and Discussion of Properties Selected for Crushed Salt/Bentonite Backfill Material (Sandia Contract No. 40–2521), RE/SPEC Inc. External Memorandum to B. M. Butcher, Sandia National Laboratories, Division 6345, Albuquerque, NM, January.

Mechanical Analyses of Wipp Disposal Rooms Backfilled with Either Crushed Salt or Crushed Salt-Bentonite

  • Ralph A. Wagner (a1), G. D. Callahan (a1) and B. M. Butcher (a2)

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